Praise for Season of Water and Ice
"Rich and wise and beautifully written....this novel again and again reminded me of why I fell in love with writing....the sudden but hard-won insights seem intensely real and right."
—ELLEN AKINS, Minneapolis Star Tribune
“Lystra’s graceful prose is evocative of place and time….This is a rich and satisfying read.”
—DONNA MARCHETTI, The Cleveland Plain Dealer
“The north woods of Michigan in 1957 proves rich emotional ground for Lystra’s quietly impressive debut novel.”
—CHRISTOPHER POTTER, Detroit Free Press
“There’s a transcendency (in the book) common to all good coming-of-age novels.”
—Time Out Chicago magazine
“Lystra….has written a beautiful novel that blends artistry with coming-of-age emotion."
—ANN BYLE, Grand Rapids Press
"This is a love story of a most unusual kind....There is a kind of innocence....that has not been so effectively portrayed since Salinger invented Holden Caulfield. Lystra's style is spare and direct and yet profoundly evocative....An absolutely stunning debut."
—TIM BAZZETT, Big Rapids (MI) Pioneer
"Lystra delves deeply into the minds and motivations of his characters, carving out an interesting and meaningful story."
—ANN ARBOR.com Newspaper
"Lystra confounds all the simplistic, expected plot turns that such a (story) premise might inspire in a lesser writer and, by allowing his characters to develop slowly and naturally, brings them into convincing and honest actions."
"Author Donald Lystra tells a tough but endearing story of two young adults grappling with some very difficult situations.... The book is not predictable in any traditional way.... Watch this book catch on with young adults and their parents."
—Mittenlit literary blog
“Season of Water and Ice has a heart big enough to be both gentle and unflinching, a masterly story powered by a young narrator uniquely wise and blinded. Read this wonderful book, fall into it, and it will change you.”
—Nick Arvin, author of Articles of War, American Academy of Arts and Letters fiction award 2006, and The Reconstructionist
"Let's not mistake Season of Water and Ice for a typical coming-of-age story. Its voice is too rich, its pacing too measured and elegant.... Donald Lystra has written a fierce and tender debut novel about the unreliability of love."
—John Dalton, author of Heaven Lake, Barnes & Noble Discover Award, 1st place 2004, and The Inverted Forest
“The prose style is plain, clear, and even Hemingwayesque. Season of Water and Ice is a north woods odyssey into manhood that is timeless and true.”
—John H. Smolens, Northern Michigan University, professor of creative writing and author of six novels
"Lystra has captured the voice and rhythms of adolescence with great skill. Season of Water and Ice is tersely told and generously realized.... It's a fine striking debut."
—Josh Henkin, author of Matrimony, a New York Times Notable Book for 2007, and The World Without You